Chocolate and Gold Coins

Friday, January 27, 2006

Foot Massage

Parents always take great pride in their children. But the things that give rise to that pride might be hard to explain. Perhaps it helps if you understand that a parent naturally wants to see a bit of himself or herself in the child.

My son is a very nice child. My wife worries that he is just too nice. She says, “He’s a sadhu. He needs to learn some street smarts or people will take advantage of him.”

My wife is suspicious of his friend H. She thinks that H very short and seems to have “small boy syndrome”: a tendency to whine about being picked on and a desire to pick on others. H is the type of boy a mother will worry will take advantage of a nice boy. He will start asking favors and then making demands. I think H is just a pretty normal boy and a good friend of my son’s.

The other day, an incident happened between my son and H (not a bad incident as you will see). My son told me about it and I told my wife. My wife was incredulous. She asked my son to explain. She came back positively beaming. She was so proud of my son.

So what happened? My son’s ankle hurt (growing pains). He asked H to give him a foot-massage just like daddy would give him. H did not know how to do this but my son taught him how.

Compare with this story of what made me proud of my son.

So here is a quiz: which parent –me or my wife–likes getting foot massages and which one is most likely to overeat ice cream?


  • Probably it is maternal instinct to try to make a child aggressive and hence survive ( as among the fittest ). On the other hand paternity is said to be an illusion and it is purely your cultural background that operates in determining how you groom your son.

    By Blogger froginthewell, at 12:38 PM  

  • Michael, I apologize if I wrote just now was hurtful. I was only thinking of it from an academic angle and did not at all mean to insult you or say that fatherhood is a bogus enterprise etc. - while biology may be unclear fatherhood certainly has tonnes of civilizational significance. May be this dichotomy, as illustrated by your post, is why it is essential in modern civilization that a kid be brought up by two parents.

    By Blogger froginthewell, at 12:50 PM  

  • Hi Froggy and Tarit
    Froggy: I think all mom's are worriers by nature but Indian mom's might be more touch more controlling. I just doesn't occur to me to be all that worried about his seven-year-old friends.

    Tarit: Thanks.

    By Blogger Michael Higgins, at 1:47 PM  

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